CAD design software has made things like drawing boards a relic of the past, perhaps kept around the desk for odd work, or maybe just for the good old days. It is almost impossible to imagine designing a modern home without using CAD.
Of course, some old school builders still use very basic sketches and operate more or less by the seat of their trousers. It's great if your house is simple and you have 30 years of experience and the house is built for speculation.
There are also many excellent house plans available to be used as is. If you can find a house plan that suits your needs and does not require any major changes, it's a great way to go.
For the homeowner, or someone who is looking for a complete remodel, the use of a standalone CAD home design software is a great idea. You can buy a very usable program for under $ 100, with many features typically found only in high-end architectural packages.
You can save a lot of money by learning to do it yourself. A DIY project such as remodeling can quickly become very complex, and something like the Home Designer Suite 10 will make your life easier. There are many products available for less than $ 100, which is remarkable, given their degree of completeness.
Features to look for when buying a CAD design software
- Ease of use is critical. If it takes weeks to learn how to do simple tasks, no one will really end the learning curve.
- The cost is important since most homeowners are constantly looking to save a few dollars. After all, why would anyone spend a lot to save a little?
- Charts must be useful and attractive. You can not normally expect high-end graphics like expensive package deals, but you can definitely get closer.
- Costing capabilities are really important. Considering how easy it is to surpass oneself during renovation or construction, it is good to have some control over the expenses.
- Suggested Design Libraries, Cabinets, Windows, Doors, etc. are really essential. With a few mouse clicks, you can change styles, sizes, locations and more. With true integration of these features, you can change your design and every aspect is automatically changed.
I remember using graph paper and reduced-scale furniture cutouts to complete a major renovation project. In fact, we have done it many times, over the years. It works, and gives you a good idea of how things might go, but compared to good CAD design, it's so primitive! Now you can get exact sizes, take a virtual tour to visualize the design, get an estimate, a bill of material, send the plan to a builder, consult inventories from various vendors, and more.
The amazing thing is that once you get used to the interface, it takes less time and effort than the manual way of the past.